Costa Votes to Rebuild America’s Infrastructure

Jul 1, 2020
Press Release

(WASHINGTON) – Congressman Jim Costa (CA-16) released the following statement after passage of H.R. 2, the Moving Forward Act, a bill which would invest more than $1.5 trillion in modern, sustainable infrastructure. This is an investment in millions of good-paying jobs, combating the climate crisis, and addressing disparities in urban, suburban and rural communities in California and throughout the country:

“A modern infrastructure lays the foundation for a thriving economy,” said Costa. “We’ve been relying on the investments of our parents and grandparents for too long. With the significant investments in water, transportation, and our communities provided by the Moving Forward Act, we can create jobs and build a more sustainable future. This important legislation paves the way for the 21st Century infrastructure the American people deserve.”

The Act has significant investments that would benefit the San Joaquin Valley, including $65 billion in funding to repair aging water infrastructure, improve drought resiliency and provide clean drinking water by: 

  • Funding for Friant-Kern Canal: Includes provisions from the Move Water Now Act , a bill which Rep. Costa co-sponsored, to provide responsible investments to repair the Friant-Kern Canal and other river restoration infrastructure activities on California’s second longest river.
  • Including an amendment from the SAVE Water Resources Act, which Rep. Costa co-sponsored, that directs the Department of the Interior to identify beneficial groundwater storage and recharge locations to help expand the Valley’s water supply. This directly address ongoing challenges our Valley faces in securing water for our farmers. 
  • Includes a provision from the Disadvantaged Community Drinking Water Assistance Act, which Rep. Costa co-sponsored, to help supply clean drinking water to disadvantaged communities in the Valley and provides approximately $3.5 billion for water infrastructure, drought resiliency measures, water storage and water recycling and reuse projects.

Although the bill makes many key investments in our aging water infrastructure, language is included that prioritizes ecosystem benefits above all other beneficial uses of water, including drinking water and agriculture. As Congress continues to debate urgent infrastructure investments, Rep. Costa will work to ensure harmful changes to how water storage projects are approved are not included.

The Moving Forward Act also heavily invests in modernizing transportation infrastructure benefiting the San Joaquin Valley by including:

  • Nearly $500 billion investment to rebuild and re-imagine the nation’s transportation infrastructure, including:
    • $60 billion in Rail Investment Funding with $19 billion dedicated to the Passenger Rail Improvement Modernization and Investment (PRIME) grant program devoted to passenger rail improvement that  would benefit California’s High Speed Rail project.
    • $29 billion for Amtrak over 5 years, with an amendment from Rep. Costa to ensure Amtrak is held accountable by requiring ridership and station staffing projects to be included in the budgeting process. 
    • $320 billion investment to modernize our nation’s highways, including:
      • Bold new funding for addressing gridlock and the most impactful projects to reduce bottlenecks that affect local regions and the national transportation network
      • Increased funding for development of charging stations and other alternative fueling options for electric and zero-emission vehicles, including an amendment from Rep. Costa to invest in faster electric vehicle charging to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and support longer distance driving
      • $5.3 billion for highway safety programs
      • $4.6 billion in funding for truck and bus safety programs
    • $105 billion to invest in our transit systems to make public transit safer and more reliable, including:
      • Increased investment in zero-emission buses to reduce carbon pollution
      • Funding to address the growing backlog of transit maintenance needs

The bill also benefits the San Joaquin Valley through investments in healthcare, children, and rural communities by:

  • Delivering affordable high-speed broadband internet access to all parts of the country by investing $100 billion to promote competition for broadband internet infrastructure in unserved and underserved communities, prioritizing those with persistent poverty, including:
    • A bill co-sponsored by Rep. Costa that gets children connected to remote learning, closes broadband adoption and digital skills gaps and enhances payment support for low-income households and the recently unemployed.
    • An amendment from Rep. Costa to hold telecommunications companies accountable and help ensure fast, reliable internet speeds for everyone.
  • Investing in schools with $130 billion in school infrastructure targeted at high-poverty schools with facilities that endanger the health and safety of students and educators. This investment will help students get back to school and create more than 2 million jobs to help workers get back to work.  with facilities that endanger the health and safety of students and educators. This investment will help students get back to school and create more than 2 million jobs to help workers get back to work.  
  • Addressing structural challenges and upgrades childcare facilities by leveraging a 5-year, $10 billion federal investment to generate additional state and private investments in making sure that childcare settings are safe, appropriate, and able to comply with current and future public health directives.
  • Invests over $100 billion into our nation's affordable housing infrastructure, including $10 billion authorization for the Community Development Block Grant, to create or preserve 1.8 million affordable homes. These investments will help reduce housing inequality, create jobs and stimulate the broader economy, increase community and household resiliency in the face of natural disasters, improve hazardous living conditions, and increase the environmental sustainability of our housing stock.
  • Modernizes the nation’s health care infrastructure by investing $30 billion to upgrade hospitals to increase capacity and strengthen care, help community health centers respond to COVID-19 and future public health emergencies, improve clinical laboratory infrastructure, support the Indian Health Service‘s infrastructure, and increase capacity for community-based care.  
  • Modernizes and strengthens the United States Postal Service by investing $25 billion to modernize postal infrastructure and operations, including a zero emissions postal vehicle fleet, processing equipment and other goods.
  • Promotes investments in our communities by spurring private investment through the tax code, through a revitalized Build America Bonds program, expansions of Private Activity Bonds, and significant enhancements to the New Markets Tax Credit and the Rehabilitation Tax Credit.

The bill also helps combat the climate crisis by:

  • Promoting new renewable energy infrastructure by incentivizing the development of wind and solar on public lands and building a workforce for offshore wind.
  • Modernizing our energy infrastructure for a clean energy future by investing more than $70 billion to transform our electric grid to accommodate more renewable energy, expand renewable energy, strengthen existing infrastructure, help develop an electric vehicle charging network, and support energy efficiency, weatherization, and Smart Communities infrastructure.
  • Reducing our carbon footprint by authorizing funding for commercialization of carbon capture, utilization, and storage technology, which Rep. Costa included as an amendment.
  • Supporting sustainable economic development by increasing and extending the Brownsfield grant program, which has helped revitalize downtown Fresno.

A fact sheet on the Moving Forward Act is available here.